Tesla, Nikola Tesla.... Unlike Bond who pretty much everyone's heard of, Tesla was a real person, that virtually no one today has heard of. Yet he's responsible for the invention of many of the things that make modern life possible. In the '90's, that's 1890's He invented, designed and supervised installation of the AC generators at Niagara Falls for Westinghouse, showing that AC power was more practical, more effective and cheaper than Edison's DC power generation. AC was superior in sending power for miles over smaller wires, were DC was limited to short distances over large wires and needing a generator every mile or so. Tesla's goal was to come near to the high frequency of sunlight, creating lights of extraordinary brightness, hoping to eliminate Edison's bulb, which used just five percent of the available energy
In addition he invented the radio, everybody was taught by incompetent teachers that it was invented by Marconi, wrong, in 1943, the Supreme Court granted credit to Tesla for the invention of radio, instead of to Marconi who'd patented a two-tuned-circuit design and a more practical four-tuned-circuit modeled after Tesla's. Marconi's patent was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court because Tesla's work predated it (Case #369, 6/21/43). But, Marconi did succeed in beating Tesla as the first person to send a wireless telegraph across the Atlantic, Tesla remarked, "Let him continue. He is using seventeen of my patents."
Tesla was also on his way to inventing the computer, Tesla's 1903 patents 723,188 and 725,605 contain the basic principles of the logical AND circuit element basic to all computers. He's also credited with inventing the electric generator, the electric motor, fluorescent lighting among other things.
The answer came with a remarkable device still known today as a Tesla coil. Patented in 1891, this invention took ordinary sixty-cycle per second household current and stepped it up to extremely high frequencies—into the hundreds of thousands of cycles per second. In addition to high frequencies, the coil could also generate extremely high voltages. With high frequencies, Tesla developed some of the first neon and fluorescent illumination. He also took the first x-ray photographs. But these discoveries paled when compared to his discovery of November 1890, when he illuminated a vacuum tube wirelessly—having transmitted energy through the air. This was the beginning of Tesla's lifelong obsession—the wireless transmission of energy.
|Oatmeal A website with a GREAT comic about Tesla and educational too|